I don’t have anything against Kroger. I like their store and it’s an old Cincinnati tradition. I have been shopping there ever since I arrived in Our Fair City. However, Kroger decided to hop on the healthy/natural/organic bandwagon with their Simple Truth line of foods which are now featured in my neighborhood store since it’s January, and we are all being good after a holiday feast of gluttony and culinary debauchery.

The Kroger Company kindly sent me a page of coupons for their Simple Truth foods. These victuals are wholesome as hell, bursting with nutrition, and so simple that even I can appreciate their lack of guile, or so they would have me think.

Fine, I needed some peanut butter and since the Simple Truth coupons are going to expire in a couple of days I thought I would get a jar of their brand. I found a wondrous display and picked up a jar of crunchy peanut butter. I flipped over the jar and read what was in there: organic peanuts, palm oil, cane sugar, and moar.

Now wait one cotton pickin’ minute, Kroger. I expect peanuts and maybe salt, but what is with the palm oil and SUGAR? I don’t need no stinkin’ sugar in my peanut butter.

Then I want to read the list of ingredients in the Simple Truth peanut butter, to make sure I have not missed anything else and I go to their website. Wow, it’s organic! Wow, it’s natural! Minimal processing and picked by virgins. Great, so, give me the nutritional information. Nope, you can’t have it. Sorry, “no results found”. Hmmmm. This IS a simple truth: you are going to get the same old stuff you always got with a new label and a new price tag.

I only inspected one of the products, I will admit, but my profound disappointment upon looking closely at that basic foodstuff cooled my off further exploration. You can be sure that Simple Truth is more expen$ive than Normal Crap (I guarantee it…and why not, if it’s not highly processed then it should be exorbitantly priced, makes PERFECT sense, not).

So, I am going to continue to do what I normally do, buy good peanuts and dump them in my food processor and grind them into peanut butter. Simple and I don’t have to do anything strenuous to get what I want and I know it’s fresh that way.*

I like simple foods now. I do believe that the more you fool with something, the more calorie filled it gets (one of Life’s Iron Rules) but I am deeply mistrustful of wild claims by grocery chains and have taken to cooking a lot of my own things from scratch.

One GREAT tool for keeping your meals simple is the grill. Done right your dinner (vegetables as well as meats and fish) are much more low calorie and high flavor than any other method of cooking. More about that later.

But for now, my friends, I am going to leave Simple Truth alone. It’s not bad, and it certainly isn’t any more dishonest than anyone else, but I don’t want to find more sugar in an already high calorie food, and don’t see why oil must be added to an already oily spread.

*Alas, Trader Joe’s (a store I just love) has some of the most stale nut butters this side of Baalbek and I have no idea why.

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